Every day during Advent 2020, we are sharing a short encouragement based around a promise in the Bible that God makes to His people. By faith, we can take hold of them to reflect on and present back to God in prayer; lifting our eyes to the hope of this season and drawing us close to the One who draws near to us.
Hosea 2:18 — On that day I will make a covenant with all the wild animals and the birds of the sky and the animals that scurry along the ground so they will not harm you.
I will remove all weapons of war from the land, all swords and bows, so you can live unafraid in peace and safety.
In the midst of a world of suffering and strife, of pandemics and peril, of loss and loneliness, those who trust in God are invited to know peace. When surrounded by the beasts of the field, the birds of the heavens, and the creeping things of the ground, we are to know peace. When there are battles raging on every side, and weapons seeking to do us harm seem to be pointed at us from every angle, we are to know peace. Peace with earthly enemies, peace with coronavirus challenges, and peace with everyday annoyances; that is the promise of God to his people.
One day, this peace will be complete for all creation — this is the great hope that advent announces! One day, the lion will lie down with the lamb, the child will play in the viper’s nest without fear, and the knowledge of God will cover the earth as the waters cover the sea. Every instrument of war will be abolished for ever, every warrior’s boot used in battle and every garment rolled in blood gathered up and made fuel for the fire instead. Instead of division, people from every tribe and every nation and every tongue will join their voices as one to declare “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!”
This eternal pace of life is one we are invited to enjoy a foretaste of today; a rhythm of pausing, resting in God once again as we centre on Him, and then continuing in the light of that. The more we take hold of that, the more we will know what it is to “live unafraid”, no matter what troubles the day will bring.